SQL Server 2012 and SharePoint 2013: Installing on a Virtual Machine

With SharePoint 2013 now available, I have updated my post SQL Server 2012: Installing on a Virtual Machine to use SharePoint 2013 instead of SharePoint 2010.  If you would like to get a head start on learning what is new with SharePoint 2013 and Excel 2013, follow the instructions below to create a virtual machine where you can play with the following products: Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise x64 (setup as a domain controller), SQL Server 2012 Enterprise x64 SP1, SharePoint 2013, PerformancePoint, Power View, PowerPivot, SSRS (SharePoint mode), Report Builder, SSAS (Multidimensional and Data Mining Mode, PowerPivot for SharePoint, Tabular Mode), and SSDT.

UPDATE: This blog was updated to reflect that SharePoint 2013 was made available to the public.

  1. The first thing I did was follow Jonathan Kehayias’s post Building a Completely Free Playground for SQL Server – (1 of 3) – Downloading the Software and Setting up a Windows Server 2008R2 VM Template to create a template, or base, VM using Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise, 64-bit (you must use 64-bit for SharePoint 2013).  Use VirtualBox for your VM, since Microsoft Virtual PC does not support 64-bit.  Make sure to change the computer name to something other than the default, since the default name is usually hard to remember
  2. Next I cloned the template VM from step 1 to create another VM and will make this a domain controller.  Then I started the VM and ran Windows Update.  Then I followed the post Step By Step Guide for Windows Server 2008 Domain Controller and DNS Server Setup (or check out this video) to set up the VM as a domain controller, which is required by SharePoint 2013 for these reasons:
    1. A PowerPivot installation integrated with SharePoint requires the SSAS PowerPivot service account to be a domain user that can manage the installation through Central Administration
    2. I have always found that it is significantly easier to setup all of the BI services if there is a separate domain account for each core group of services.  This makes it easy to manage the accounts and ensure that the services remain isolated from each other
  3. Installed SharePoint 2013 (by following the steps at Installing the BI features of SharePoint 2013).  After SharePoint Server 2013 installation finishes do not run the SharePoint products configuration wizard (since this wizard is to create a sql server database, but you have not installed sql server yet – the PowerPivot for SharePoint 2013 Configuration tool in step #8 will do this instead). You can download the evaluation version at Download Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013
  4. Followed the steps at SQL Server 2012 (RC0) Business Intelligence Configuration for setting up the domain accounts to use in the SQL Server installation. See SQL Server 2012 (RC0) Installation and Configuration for the way you should use these domain accounts when installing SQL Server in the next step
  5. Installed SQL Server 2012 (by following the steps at Installing the BI features of SharePoint 2013), and then downloaded and installed SQL Server 2012 SP1 (or even better use the SQL Server 2012 install that already has SP1 – you can get the evaluation version here).  When installing select all options except for “Reporting Services – Native” and “Distributed Replay Controller” and “Distributed Replay Client”.  Note one of the features to select is “Analysis Services” and during the setup you will see a “Analysis Services Configuration” screen where you should choose the Server Mode “Multidimensional and Data Mining Mode”
  6. After the default instance was installed in the previous step I started the installation of SQL Server 2012 again and chose to perform a new installation of SQL Server 2012, but for the setup role chose “SQL Server PowerPivot for SharePoint” (by following the steps at Installing the BI features of SharePoint 2013).  You need SQL Server 2012 Service Pack 1 in order to integrate the BI features (PowerPivot for SharePoint and SSRS) with SharePoint 2013.  If you run the RTM version of SQL Server 2012 setup, you won’t get too far because it will fail the installation rule that SharePoint 2010 is required.  That’s because the setup doesn’t know anything about SharePoint 2013 and the latest release includes major architectural changes
  7. Started the installation of SQL Server 2012 a 3rd time and chose to perform a new installation of SQL Server 2012.  Chose only one feature which was “Analysis Services” and for Server Mode chose “Tabular Mode”.  I chose a Named instance of TABULAR
  8. Ran the PowerPivot for SharePoint 2013 Configuration tool (by following the steps at Installing the BI features of SharePoint 2013)
  9. Started adding the extra service applications that are needed to get a fully working BI site (by following the steps at Installing the BI features of SharePoint 2013): PerformancePoint Service Application, Visio Graphics Service, Reporting Services Service Application (note if you need to run the command “Install-SPRSService” there is no space in that command)
  10. Created a SSRS report document library and installed Report Builder 3.0 from the steps at Create SSRS Report with SharePoint 2010 Integrated Mode (this is for SharePoint 2010 but it’s very similar to SharePoint 2013)
  11. Installed the 64-bit version of Excel 2013 – You can download the evaluation version here (it installs the 32-bit version by default, so you must go to the x64 directory and run setup.exe from there).  Make sure to install the Office Shared Features.  NOTE: PowerPivot is now integrated with Excel 2013 so installing the PowerPivot add-in is no longer needed. You just need to enable it via Start PowerPivot in Excel 2013 add-in.  Also a new feature in Excel 2013 is the ability to use Power View: Create a Power View sheet in Excel 2013
  12. I installed SSDT.  I had thought I installed this when I went thru the SQL Server 2012 installation process since it was an option on the Features Selection menu that I selected.  However, this does not install the full SSDT product (SSDT is missing the database project piece), but only a pointer to it that makes SSDT visible when you create a project in Visual Studio 2010.  So to fully install SSDT, follow Install SQL Server Data Tools.  Yes this is very confusing and I blogged about it at SSDT – Installation confusion
  13. Then I installed Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Report Builder.  This installs the stand-alone version of Report Builder and is optional since you can run Report Builder other ways: How to: Start Report Builder (Report Builder 3.0)
  14. Created a business intelligence center site in SharePoint 2013 via Configure a Business Intelligence Center in SharePoint Server 2013
  15. I then ran Windows Update and installed the many patches

More info:

Power View for Cubes

How to install SharePoint Server 2013 preview with SQL Server 2012 SP1 CTP3 SSRS, SSAS, and PowerPivot and PowerView

SP2013 Deployment Crash Course

Buildng a SharePoint 2013 BI Demo Environment Part 1 – Introduction

Resources for Installing and Configuring BI with SharePoint 2013 and SQL Server 2012

About James Serra

James is a big data and data warehousing solution architect at Microsoft. Previously he was an independent consultant working as a Data Warehouse/Business Intelligence architect and developer. He is a prior SQL Server MVP with over 25 years of IT experience.
This entry was posted in SharePoint 2013, SQL Server 2012, SQLServerPedia Syndication. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to SQL Server 2012 and SharePoint 2013: Installing on a Virtual Machine

  1. Thanks for putting this together! I’m building my blog links list for “setting up virtual SQL 2012 sandbox”. I have just added this post to that link.

  2. Buis says:

    James – thanks for the great post.

    As a newbie, I have a question about cloning VM. When we clone the VM, a new virtual disk (along with a new SSID for the disk) will be created. This will normally trigger/interrupt the Windows Server to be reactivated. Given there may be a limit on the times of activation allowed per license key, do you have any suggestions/thoughts to share so that we won’t run out of activation quota?


  3. Leonardo Moreno Forero says:

    Hi James,

    I would like to know what settings to use for virtual machine to complete installation. How much RAM? How much processor? the amount of storage?

    Thanks for your answers.

  4. Pingback: SharePoint 2013: Integración con SSRS 2012 (I)! - Blog del CIIN

  5. Pingback: Install and Configure SharePoint 2013 with SQL 2013 SP1 CTP-3 | SharePoint Guerrilla

  6. Phillip says:

    I am confused on whether or not you installed this all on one VM or two, one for the domain controller and another for SQL and SharePoint.

  7. Pingback: Resources for Installing and Configuring BI with SharePoint 2013 and SQL Server 2012 - SQL Server - SQL Server - Toad World

  8. Ganesh says:


    I have SQL 2012 in one VM and SharePoint 2013 in another VM. I have created powerview reports in the SP server getting data from SQL server (different VM). I am accessing the powerview report from a local PC (say my laptop). Which server’s memory will be utilised when I access the powerview report.